Determining treatment of claimant/recipient with partner in gaol - general provisions


Verification of a claimant/recipient's partner being in gaol is needed to determine the rate of payment received (1.1.P.85).

Definition: member of a couple

A person is a member of a couple under the SSAct if they have a relationship with another person, where both people are over the age of consent (applicable to the state or territory), are committed to each other on a permanent or indefinite basis, are not in a prohibited relationship, and are either:

  • legally married, or
  • in a registered relationship, (, or
  • in a de facto relationship (

Act reference: SSAct section 4(12) to section 4(13) Prohibited relationship

Verifying imprisonment

If a claimant/recipient's partner is in gaol, the length of the gaol sentence MUST be verified. This is done by contacting the relevant state authority, such as the Department of Corrective Services, either in writing or by phone. Psychiatric institutions may be contacted for information about the nature of confinement.

Release from gaol

When the partner is released from gaol, the Prison Discharge Certificate is used to verify the length of time they spent in gaol.

Payment rates

For partner in gaol rates refer to Common pension rates and Common benefit rates.

Policy reference: SS Guide 2.2.1 Verifying identity, Situations that constitute being in gaol or psychiatric confinement

Last reviewed: